Are you thinking of sharing your life with a larger dog?
Owning large and giant dogs is amazing. It’s almost like sharing your home with another human roommate.
However, it’s not really the same as owning a smaller dog. That’s why veterinarians say that large dogs are not for everyone. The size of your dog can affect your way of taking care of them, and it’ll also affect your lifestyle in some ways.
Deciding to go for a larger dog comes with its own unique set of challenges and demands. For starters, a larger dog means you need to have a larger space available in your house. Larger dogs will also need bigger servings of food as compared to smaller dogs.
Most of all, larger dogs are much stronger than smaller ones. This means they can drag you around on the street during your morning walks, especially if they spot something from a distance that they’re interested in chasing.
These reasons may be enough for many people to conclude that, as much as they love dogs, the larger ones are just not for them. Even some small dog owners find it hard to understand why others decide to sign up for larger dogs when they can get many of the same benefits from the smaller ones.
What this doesn’t take into account is that there are benefits to getting a larger dog too. For instance, larger dogs have more self-control and tolerance than smaller dogs. Because of that natural self-control they possess, they are often much easier to train.
Once you’ve taught your large dog some simple tricks and other important behaviors, you’ll see how your dog can attract plenty of attention as you take him out for a walk in the park.
If, after hearing some of the pros and cons, you’re still interested in the prospect of owning a large dog, here are five considerations you might want to keep in mind as you make your ultimate choice.
1. Large Dogs Cost More
Regardless of breed or size, plenty of dogs come with a hefty price tag. However, the larger a dog is, the higher their price will be as well, and dogs can cost thousands of dollars.
Thus, when you decide to get a large dog, be prepared to budget accordingly to make sure you can afford it. Aside from the dog itself, buying everything else they’ll need can also be expensive. Some of these items include their collars, leashes, dog toys, and other things that a large dog may need to maintain a healthy, active lifestyle.
2. A Larger Dogs Means More Food
Larger dogs have a different set of needs than small dogs, especially in terms of food. Besides their size, large dogs have more specific nutritional requirements than smaller dogs do because they have a different set of health issues based on their size.
Large breed dogs are more at risk of developing joint problems like hip dysplasia compared to smaller dogs, for example. This means that it’s vital that you purchase a large breed dog food that is specifically tailored to boost and strengthen their health, especially their joints and bones. If you’re unsure which dog food to buy for your large dog, don’t hesitate to consult your pet’s veterinarian for a reference.
Additionally, owning a large dog means you’ll have to be prepared to give them more food too. So, it’s best that you’re also financially prepared to buy larger quantities of dog food to maintain your dog’s diet.
3. Large Dogs Need Bigger Spaces
Naturally, if your dog is bigger, it means they’ll need a bigger space to move, or lay, around in. That’s why you need to check first if your current home or room is spacious enough for the large dog that you’re planning to buy.
If you’re planning to share your bed with your dog occasionally, make sure you have at least a double or a queen-size bed ready to fit the two of you. Large dog breeds like Boxers and Saint Bernards are the best cuddlers in bed, so you might as well enjoy that benefit.
Large dogs also love hanging out in the living room with you, which means you’ll have to share at least 70% of the sofa too. If you’ve got a couch spacious enough for a human and a large dog, then you’re good to go. Aside from a spacious room or sofa, you’ll also need a larger vehicle to fit him in whenever you decide to take him with you for travel or if you’re driving your dog to the vet.
4. Consider Where You Live
Another factor that could affect your decision to own a large dog is what you live in and where you are located. For instance, if you live in the city and you’ll need to take your dog to the vet, it may be an easier task if you have your own vehicle or if you’re living nearby a vet clinic. However, if you live in rural areas where you’d need to take a long trip to reach the vet, make sure you can get your dog there by yourself.
Aside from your address, you also have to consider the place you’re currently living. Are you renting an apartment, or do you own the house? Often, landlords don’t allow dogs in rental apartments, or if they do, they limit it to small dogs.
Even if your landlord does permit you to keep your large dog in the apartment, if you’re the type of person who frequently moves around it may still be challenging. However, if you’ve got your own home, you’re free to own the dog you want.
5. Some Large Breed Dogs Need More Exercise Than Others
While giant dog breeds are almost the same in growth size, not all of them require much exercise. Some large dogs need more exercise than others. If you’re planning to own a large dog from breeds like a hound, Labrador retriever, shepherd, or collie, they’ll need exercise every day.
For this reason, you need to make sure that your lifestyle and daily schedule will allow you to have time to take your large dog for a walk or hike. These large dog breeds need at least one hour of physical activity to keep them in good shape.
Ready To Be A Large Dog Owner?
Now that you’ve thought a bit about what it takes, you can now assess for yourself whether you’re ready to commit to owning a large dog. Large dogs are one of the best bed-warmers that you may ever have, and together with their size, they have a gigantic heart for their owners too.
Overall, a large dog makes an excellent companion not only in your house but in your life in general. As long as you know what you’re getting into, there’s nothing for you to be worried about—just be prepared to cater to all his needs!